Coupon Marketing

Many popular online stores offer a coupon system of some kind, and they hand them out to customers frequently. It’s not a coincidence, either – the effects of coupon marketing are widely known, and if you’re not using coupons at your store, you’re missing out on a big opportunity.

Coupons are essentially discounts – and everybody loves feeling like they’ve found a bargain. However, there are a lot of fun ways you can use coupons beyond simple discounts, and each of them can help you drive more sales.

In this article, we’ll talk a bit about coupon marketing in general, then introduce you to four strategies you can use to drive sales at your WooCommerce store. Finally, we’ll give you a brief overview of how to use coupons in WooCommerce. Let’s get to it!

An introduction to coupon marketing strategies

Basic coupon marketing strategy is simple – you give out vouchers or codes that users can redeem in exchange for discounts and free items. The benefits of this strategy are numerous, including:

Ultimately, everyone loves a bargain, which is why coupon marketing works so well. However, using simple discount coupons is way too simplistic an approach when it comes to e-commerce, so let’s explore some other options.

How to use coupon marketing to increase sales at your WooCommerce store (4 strategies)

How big of a discount you want to give to your customers will depend on several factors, including your profit margins, how urgently you need to make sales, and more. Instead, for this section, we’ll focus on when and how to use coupons more effectively. Let’s get to it!

1. Offer coupons for first-time buyers and existing customers

Convincing new visitors to make a purchase from you is by far the hardest part of running an e-commerce store. Once they’ve made a purchase, you can start building trust then get them to come back.

A common tactic many online stores use is to provide coupons with enticing discounts for first-time customers. You can even configure an exit intent pop-up to display the offer, so you can target visitors on the way out of the virtual door.

An exit-intent popup featuring a coupon code.

With this approach, you can make sales you otherwise wouldn’t. Once you get customers on the hook, you can use email marketing to send them further coupons, which helps keep your store at the forefront of their minds.

2. Use coupons to drum up excitement during specific seasons

Whenever there’s a seasonal change or a popular holiday, we’re willing to bet your inbox gets flooded with discount coupons. Some dates are better for sales than others – such as Christmas – although there’s almost always an opportunity to use date-specific coupons to drive sales.

To do this, you can either display coupon offers on your home page or contact your subscriber list via email. In practice, nothing is stopping you from using both approaches, though:

Offering holiday-specific coupons.

Keep in mind, though – just because you’re sending out coupons via email doesn’t mean you can skimp on making them appealing. If you’re looking for inspiration, check out some holiday-themed email examples to see how the very best do it.

3. Offer price-minimum coupons to increase your per-sale averages

One of the most important metrics for an online store is how much you earn on average for each purchase. Logically, you want the number to be as high as possible, and using coupon marketing is a great way to get there.

When there are discounts involved, people may spend more money than they would have done otherwise. You can benefit from this by offering coupons that only activate for purchases over a specific monetary amount.

For example, let’s say you offer customers a 15% discount if they spend more than $20. You’ve already run the numbers, so you know you’re still making a profit either way. In practice, this can help increase earnings drastically since it drives impulse purchases.

4. Create ‘Buy One Get One Free’ (BOGOF) coupons to move less popular items

Ideally, every single product or service on your store would sell equally. However, you’ll often run into situations where specific items don’t perform as well as you’d want (or hope).

If we’re talking about physical products, this becomes a problem because you’re stuck with merchandise taking up space. A practical solution is to ‘bundle’ these items alongside better sellers by using coupons. With this approach, you can make your high-margin items more attractive and get rid of unwanted inventory at the same time.

An example of a bundle-based coupon.

To be fair, your bundles won’t make as much money as if you’d sold each product individually. However, they can often drive many more sales, which means you come out ahead in any case.

How to use coupons in WooCommerce

As you may know, WooCommerce comes with a coupon system out of the box. However, it only works for very basic coupons, including fixed-price and percentage discounts.

WooCommerce's coupon system.

These types of coupons can work for for the first two marketing strategies we went over in the last section. However, for product bundling and price-minimum coupons, you’ll need access to more advanced functionality. Unsurprisingly, the best way to implement more advanced coupon marketing strategies with WooCommerce is by using plugins.

There are a lot of powerful coupon plugins you can try out, but here are three good WooCommerce coupon plugins start with:

On top of plugins, you’ll also need access to a powerful email marketing platform, so you can build a subscribers list to target with your coupons.

If you haven’t started building an email list yet, right now is the perfect time to do so. Email is a powerful marketing tool, even without coupons, and together they’ll help you drive a lot more sales.

Conclusion

E-commerce provides you with a lot of opportunities to use coupons in more creative ways than simply offering discounts. With the right approach, coupons can help you boost sales in specific situations, and you can also try out new methods anytime you want.

As far as WooCommerce goes, here are four approaches you can use with coupons:

  1. Offer coupons for first-time buyers and existing customers.
  2. Use coupons to drum up excitement around specific seasons.
  3. Offer price-minimum coupons to increase your per-sale averages.
  4. Create buy-one-get-one deals to move less popular items.

Do you have any questions about coupon marketing in general? Let’s go over them in the comments section below!

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